Saturday, August 18, 2012

Temperature Anomalies

The sweltering July heat was reminiscent of a line from the Lovin' Spoonful tune Summer In The City:
All around, people looking half dead
Walking on the sidewalk, hotter than a match head
High temperatures fueled wildfires, warmed and dried up surface water, exacerbated drought conditions, and wilted crops around the globe.

July 2012 was the hottest month on record in the United States.
It ain't the heat; it's the humility.
~ Yogi Berra

July 2012 - Difference from mean historical temperature for July 1895-2012
NOAA National Climatic Data Center

The Antarctic Peninsula, much of eastern Europe, and North Africa also recorded unusually warm temperatures in July. To the contrary, Australia, Northern and Western Europe, Eastern Russia, Alaska, and Southern South America were cooler than normal.

A statistical trend towards climate extremes concerns climatologists.
The distribution of seasonal mean temperature anomalies has shifted toward higher temperatures and the range of anomalies has increased.
~ James Hansen, NASA GISS director
July 2012 Data (Source National Climatic Data Center)
  • The average combined global land and ocean surface temperature was 1.12°F above the 20th century average (60.4°F) for July.
  • The Northern Hemisphere land surface temperature was the all-time warmest July on record since 1895, at 2.14°F above the average.
  • Over 2 million acres burned in the United States due to wildfires (the fourth most since 2000).
  • Moderate to exceptional drought conditions were recorded in 62.9 percent of the contiguous United States.
  • It was the fourth consecutive month the Northern Hemisphere set a new monthly land temperature record.
  • Sea ice in the Arctic averaged only 3.1 million square miles (the second lowest July sea ice extent on record).
Selected significant climate anomalies that occurred in July 2012 are depicted below in a worldwide map prepared by the National Climatic Data Center:

Selected Significant Climate Anomalies & Events July 2012
NOAA National Climatic Data Center

Your descendants shall gather your fruits.
~ Virgil